Cloud gaming firm OnLive has laid off its entire work force and closed its doors. As a pioneer in this market, OnLive started its paid cloud-based game streaming service in late 2010. Journalists were generally favorable about OnLive's service but noted that the game experience wasn't as good as playing on your own harware due to issues with lag, freezing and smearing.
OnLive premiered as a free service a couple of years back before going on to charge users a $9.99 monthly fee for access. The subscription gets you unlimited access to a library of over 200 games, including many triple-A titles, which are playable on PCs, Macs, tablets, and TVs. OnLive sells a $99.99 breakout box for TV connectivity. Since the service is cloud-based, users can play instantly without having to download anything. The fact that games are streamed does add some extra latency, though.
OnLive isn't without competitors. In early July, Sony moved to acquire rival cloud gaming service Gaikai for $380 million. Sony said the acquisition will allow it to "deliver a world-class cloud-streaming service that allows users to instantly enjoy a broad array of content . . . anytime, anywhere on a variety of internet-connected devices."
OnLive spokesman Brian Jaquet claims the company isn't going out of business and that the service will continue to operate. The company has filed for an Assignment for the Benefit of Creditors in the state of California, an alternative to bankruptcy that will replace the existing company with a new one, while bringing back a "large percentage of employees". Details about the transaction aren't revealed, but the company claims it's now backed by "substantial funding".
We can now confirm that the assets of OnLive, Inc. have been acquired into a newly-formed company and is backed by substantial funding, and which will continue to operate the OnLive Game and Desktop services, as well as support all of OnLive’s apps and devices, as well as game, productivity and enterprise partnerships. The new company is hiring a large percentage of OnLive, Inc.’s staff across all departments and plans to continue to hire substantially more people, including additional OnLive employees. All previously announced products and services, including those in the works, will continue and there is no expected interruption of any OnLive services.
We apologize that we were unable to comment on this transaction until it completed, and were limited to reporting on news related to OnLive’s businesses. Now that the transaction is complete, we are able to make this statement.